Authored by: Mark Masterson , Nancy Sorkin Rabinowitz , James Robson , Lloyd Llewellyn-Jones

Sex in Antiquity

Print publication date:  December  2014
Online publication date:  December  2014

Print ISBN: 9780415519410
eBook ISBN: 9781315747910
Adobe ISBN: 9781317602774


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When we were asked by Routledge to edit a volume on gender and sexuality, we knew that we wanted a set of new and forward-looking essays, not a summation of where we had been. We wanted to present what people were currently working on. Throughout the editing process, however, we struggled about what to call it – “Sex in Antiquity” was our attempt at a catchy title, but what should the subtitle be? We were concerned for a while that the eventual choice, “gender and sexuality in the ancient world,” might lead to a redundancy between the two halves – before and after the colon. Antiquity and the ancient world might seem to be synonyms, even though they are not really identical: one refers to time and the other designates a space as well. In a similar fashion, sex is not the same as gender and sexuality but is refined and expanded on in those terms. Looked at in this way, the subtitle explains and complicates the word sex. The apparent redundancy is even less significant because each term – sex, gender, sexuality – might be said to contain multitudes; they are not only internally complex but lie in complex relationships with one another, and are sometimes even in conflict with one another. The essays in this collection take gender and sexuality, in all the richness that these terms possess, as their starting point; thus the book is about sex, as refracted through these lenses.

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